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Old 06-12-2013, 07:06 PM   #1
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Grand Isle as a destination

The only time we can get away for a boat trip is winter. Not the best, but we will work with it. We have discussed cruising down the Mississippi, over to the Atchafalaya River, down to Morgan City and East on the intercoastal to a canal down to Grand Isle. From there up to New Orleans.

Has anyone cruised from Morgan City to Grand Isle. Intersting? OK? Not worth it?
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Old 06-12-2013, 07:52 PM   #2
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If you are crossing the lake, a good side trip is up the Tchefuncte River to Madisonville and beyond. A beautiful estuary river with some good restaurants. My only experience with Grand Isle has been fishing. Don't know much about it as a cruising destination.
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Old 06-12-2013, 09:08 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bikeandboat View Post
The only time we can get away for a boat trip is winter. Not the best, but we will work with it. We have discussed cruising down the Mississippi, over to the Atchafalaya River, down to Morgan City and East on the intercoastal to a canal down to Grand Isle. From there up to New Orleans.

Has anyone cruised from Morgan City to Grand Isle. Intersting? OK? Not worth it?
It's all about the journey...not necessarily the destination. It is what you make of it. There is not reason you can't have fun on a trip like that. Go for it!!! Have fun.

Or hang a left and go to the Mississippi Sound area and the barrier islands over there. Just realize the weather can be a challenge in the Winter months.
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Old 06-12-2013, 10:22 PM   #4
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Thanks for the responses. Actually, I did keep a 27' Albin Family Cruiser in Madisonville for a year or so. What a wonderful cruising area.

I would like to hear from anyone that has traveled the canals from the GIWW down to Grand Isle.
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Old 06-13-2013, 10:45 PM   #5
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I have made the trip in my previous boat, a Camano. I used to keep it in Cocodrie La. which is about 30 miles south of Houma. If you will be coming from Morgan City on the Intracoastal you would turn south on Houma Navigation Canal about mile 59. You can then stay on "Houma nav" channel all the way out to the Gulf about 35-40 miles, once out of Cat Is. Pass turn east for 35-40 miles and you are at Grand Isle. It is a great fishing destination, not many cruisers stop there. It has been about 9 years since I made the trip, I found it interesting lots of offshore oil platforms and traffic wich I am interested in. We stayed at Pirates Cove Marina, it was during the off fishing season I dont know if they still take transients. If you enjoy seeing lots of beautiful sportfishing, and shrimp, boats you will see plenty. Good seafood restaurants also. The next day we cruised east to Tiger Pass up to Venice just off of the Miss. River we stayed at Cypress Cove Marina there The next day crossed the Miss. R. at Baptiste Collette and took Baptiste Collette to the Chandeleure Islands and on to the Mississippi Sound Eastbound. It was an interesting trip the weather was nice and the Gulf smooth. Venice and G.I. are both oil/ fishing ports. If you are interested in going through New Orleans you can take the Barataria Waterway from Grand Isle to Lafitte and get back on the ICW at mile 15 west of Harvey lock and continue East to Harvey lock and across the Miss. R to New Orleans. Any questions just let me know.
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Old 06-14-2013, 11:17 AM   #6
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Damn Steve....Having grown up in the Louisiana swamps that sounds like a wonderful trip. Different...yes!!! But sounds really cool!!!
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Old 02-23-2014, 09:22 AM   #7
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We finally made the trip over the Christmas Holidays. We traveled from Madisonville, across the lake, through the industrial canal and lock, then up the Mississippi a few miles to Harvey Lock. We then traveled 15 miles to the Baritaria Waterway where we trned South. There was a strong North wind which had been blowing for a couple weeks or so. This caused the water level to be very low. We actually bumped the bottom in our 1981 Mainship II 34' a few times. Basically, everything was shut down on Grand Isle during Christmas to New Year Eve, but we walked quite a bit, even in the rain to see some of the islalnd. Interesting place. Our return to Madisonville was the same route.
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Old 02-23-2014, 10:20 AM   #8
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Where did you stay at Grand Isle and how was it? Water levels are usually low in winter around here and a North wind makes it worse all along the Northern Gulf Coast. There are some nice deep slow moving rivers along lake Pontchartrain and Manchac they are quiet this time of year full of go fast boaters and jetskis once it warms up.
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Old 02-23-2014, 11:19 AM   #9
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The North wind was vicious at times, along with some rain. We were told the North wind was the reason the water was so low. We spent one night at a marina in Lafite, but had to stay at their wall because the wind had driven the water so low we could not get into their slips. This Marina was a few hundred yards North of C&M Mairne.

At Grand Isle we ran into major problems finding a dock. A marina named "Sand Dollar" on the East end of the island was closed. We worked our way West along the Northern edge of the island hoping to find a friendly looking dock where we could stay a night or two. We did not need electricity or water since our water tank was full and our little generator provided the power we needed.

During the trek along the Northern edge of the island the wind was howling. Our single engine with no thrusters makes you think twice before just pulling up to a dock just to take a look. We finally ran into very low water and the depths listed on the charts were not encouraging. We decided to turn around and see what we could find at Sand Dollar.

Back at Sand Dollar we pulled up to the fuel dock so we could look around. The place was basically deserted. We tried the phone number but only got a recording. We were getting thrown around so badly by the winds we finally decided to pull inside the marina area to a long walkway where we secured the boat and did find the waters better than on the outside. This is where we were for two nights with our little gen purring away to keep us warm and dry.

We did walk three miles down the island just to see what was there. The rain coats were put to good use, but overall the walk was fun. On another trip we walked over to the beaches on the South side of the island. This is definitely a fishing and industrial island. I will go back someday just to see it when fishing is in season.
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Old 02-23-2014, 03:40 PM   #10
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Yes, it is a great fishing port commercial and sports but not much for transient cruisers.
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